Premier Lin Chuan today urged ministries and agencies to monitor public construction projects so that any lag in budget utilization will not have a negative impact on overall economic performance. He noted that the Public Construction Commission (PCC) has already come up with more effective approaches for projects that were running behind schedule, and lauded the PCC and related ministries and agencies for their efforts because those projects are now making good progress.
The premier made these remarks following the PCC’s progress review report on major public construction projects at a Cabinet meeting.
To accelerate the promotion of new projects in the pipeline for 2017, Lin asked Minister without Portfolio Wu Hong-mo and the PCC to make sure that ministries and agencies fast-track preliminary procedures for approved projects including land acquisition, modifications in land utilization, soil and water conservation planning, urban design reviews and environmental assessments.
The PCC said it has examined current public projects with other ministries and agencies, and various measures have been adopted, including expediting payments based on project milestones, to fast-track progress. This will allow approximately NT$84.52 million (US$2.68 million) to be utilized by year-end, bringing overall utilization of allocated budget funds up to NT$306.53 billion (US$9.71 billion), or over 90 percent of the total allocated budgets, contributing nearly 2 percent to gross domestic product.
For major construction projects that have been delayed, the PCC will continue its guidance strategies as well as management measures to ensure that ministries and agencies make every effort to expedite project progress. Where project tenders have been nullified or cancelled, or previously awarded contracts have been terminated, the PCC is assisting ministries and agencies to identify causes and propose solutions while helping put projects out to tender or re-issue contracts so that construction can resume.
To increase investments to boost the economy, the PCC has asked ministries and agencies to check and fast-track permit application procedures for new public projects scheduled for 2017 to help those projects get off to a good start. As the end of the year is the peak season for budget implementation, the PCC also urged ministries and agencies to accelerate project milestone verification and payment processes so that funds allocated by the government enter the market, expanding domestic demand and boosting industrial development while facilitating vendor fund utilization.